Chou Wen-Chung

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Chou Wen-chung’s Centennial and Legacy is Celebrated with a Concert on March 21, 2024 at Miller Theatre

The Chinese-born composer Chou Wen-chung (1923–2019) had an enormous influence on concert music in America and was responsible for bringing over the next generation of musicians from China, including Tan Dun, Pulitzer Prize winner Zhou Long, Chen Yi and Bright Sheng. He studied with and worked closely with Edgar Varèse. On March 21, 2024 at 7:30 pm Continuum performs a special concert celebrating the composer’s centennial and legacy at Columbia University’s Miller Theatre (2960 Broadway at West 116th Street, New York City). The concert is co-presented by Spiralis Music Trust and the Department of Music at Columbia.

The program, performed by the contemporary ensemble Continuum led by Joel Sachs, displays Chou’s special ability to blend Eastern and Western styles, techniques and tropes in his compositions. A highlight of the concert is the American premiere of In the Mode of Shang for chamber orchestra. The evening also features a survey of Chou’s extensive catalog of works, including Ode to Eternal Pine (2009), Twilight Colors (2007), Yu Ko (Fisherman’s Song) (1965), and The Willows are New (1957) for piano solo. 

The event is part of an ongoing endeavor to maintain and extend Chou Wen-chung’s legacy. Other components include commissioned works in Chou’s name in China and the United States, a lecture series at the 21st Century China Center at UCSD, the Center for US-China Arts Exchange at Columbia University, and more.

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